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  • An anxiety disorder involving fear or discomfort in unfamiliar places, often combined with the fear of an unexpected panic attack occurring in these places. Often this includes a strong fear of being away from home, resulting in the individual being confined to his or her residence. Agoraphobia has a prevalence of about 5% in the U.S. population. Agoraphobia (and panic disorder) can be successfully treated with a gradual exposure therapy, often combined with cognitive ther apy and antianxiety and antidepressant medication. For more information, see Barlow (2002).

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